Yorkshire Vikings v Lancashire Lightning - Consistency key in T20 quest, urges Andrew Gale

YORKSHIRE first-team coach Andrew Gale wants more consistency from his players as they gear up for a crunch meeting with arch rivals Lancashire in the T20 North Group.

Yorkshire Vikings' Adam Lyth.

It has been a case of one step forward, two steps back for Yorkshire in T20 over the years, and this season’s campaign is proving no different.

Although Yorkshire suffered washouts against Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire at Emerald Headingley, victories against Derbyshire by 99 runs at Headingley and by 29 runs against Durham at Chester-le-Street were offset by a six-wicket loss to Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge and a three-wicket defeat to Leicestershire at Grace Road.

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Now Yorkshire are aiming to get back on track after Friday’s defeat at Grace Road, with tonight’s fixture their seventh in the 10-match group campaign which concludes with games against Durham at Headingley on Wednesday, the return fixture against Lancashire at Old Trafford on Thursday and a meeting with Derbyshire at Headingley on Sunday – officially a home game for Derbyshire as their ground is being used by the England women.

“We’ve got to get some consistency together,” said Gale. “That’s been our problem for a number of years now.

“We’ve seen in two games so far that we’ve been outstanding; we’ve held our nerve and played some good T20 cricket.

“Now I want to see the lads being consistent and backing up what they’ve done in the two wins that we’ve had, and there’s no reason why they can’t do that,” added Gale.

As ever, T20 is a game of fine margins. Yorkshire were not too far away in defeat at Notts, while the Leicestershire fixture went down to the wire.

“T20 is a game where you can play your best cricket and still lose,” added Gale. “It’s a little bit up and down in that respect. Even the best teams in the world don’t win 10 out of 10 (group games). What I’m after is us backing up performances one after another.”

One man who has backed them up so far this season is Adam Lyth, Yorkshire’s leading run-scorer in the tournament with three half-centuries in four innings.

Lyth, who has made 205 runs at an average of 51.25 at a strike-rate of 168 per 100 balls, feels that three wins from the last four should be enough to reach the quarter-finals.

“Yeah, potentially,” he said. “If we can get on a bit of a run we’ve still got a very good chance.

“I think we’ve played some good cricket so far; we’re not always going to be 10 out of 10, but some parts of the Leicester game we were exceptional, and we just lost our way a little bit with the bat and the ball, but that can happen.”

Looking ahead to the Lancashire clash, Lyth added: “Hopefully it will be a good pitch and a cracking game. It’s one that we obviously look forward to.

“There won’t be a crowd in, but that won’t matter.

“It will still be played in the right way as always.”

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James Mitchinson